If your legs and feet feel sore, heavy and tired at the end of a long day, you’re not alone. Our feet strike the ground over 10,000 times in a single day, absorbing more than 600 metric tons of force over a lifetime. For most of us, heavy, tired legs are the result of prolonged tension which leads to fatigue. Overuse, whether training too hard or simply standing for extended periods of time each day, contributes to that undeniable sore, weighted feeling in the legs. However, underusing your legs (or lack of physical activity in general) can also cause discomfort and lead to painful cramping. But sometimes it’s not that simple and a combination of other factors can lead to the condition. Understanding why your legs feel tired and your feet are sore is an important first step in determining the best line of treatment.
What else causes heavy, tired legs and sore feet?
Besides over or underusing the legs and feet, other factors can contribute to leg fatigue and foot soreness. First, age is sometimes a factor. Unfortunately, as we age, our connective tissue (cartilage) changes, causing leg achiness and tightness. Circulation issues are also a common culprit. Why? Because poor circulation has the biggest impact on the legs since it’s harder for the blood to flow upwards from the feet to the heart. When the blood can’t circulate, blood can collect in the legs which can produce a tired and heavy sensation. This is why people with underlying conditions that cause poor circulation, such as diabetes and atherosclerosis, often suffer from swollen, tired legs and ankles at the end of the day.
Another cause of tired, heavy legs is varicose veins and this condition is also related to poor circulation. Varicose veins are a fairly common ailment—about 30% of the population have them. They occur when small, superficial veins lose their elasticity and start to pool blood, resulting in enlarged, twisted, knotty veins that protrude from the skin. While usually benign, varicose vein cases may still result in leg tenderness, heaviness and pain after walking or standing.
Sore feet and legs can also be caused by a host of other underlying medical conditions. For example, low levels of potassium in the blood, often caused by other conditions or prescription medications, can cause tired, heavy legs. Pregnancy, obesity and even smoking can also exacerbate foot soreness and leg fatigue issues.
It’s important to consult your doctor to ensure there isn’t a serious underlying medical reason for your tired legs and sore feet that may require medical treatment. However, most leg and feet heaviness and fatigue can be resolved with a few, simple lifestyle changes and treatments you can do at home.
Movement & Exercise
Obviously, if you’re generally sedentary, getting up and moving will go a long way to relieve achy, tired legs. Your muscles weaken after prolonged inactivity. And when your muscles are weak, you’re more likely to suffer muscle soreness from simple, everyday activities. Staying active will stimulate blood flow to muscle tissue, keeping it healthy. Some people have the opposite problem. Save for an injury, tired legs and sore feet of highly active individuals are frequently caused by overworking the muscles. If you’re overusing your legs and feet, make sure to allow the body time to adequately rest. Without proper rest, the leg muscles can’t fully recover. Also, regardless of activity level, stretching adequately before any physical activity will help prevent that uncomfortable tired-leg feeling.
Besides generally staying active, there are also specific exercises that can help relieve tired legs. Stretching the quads is very important because the quad muscle is so large. When the quad gets fatigued, the entire leg feels fatigued. A quad stretch will relieve some of that tension. Simply hold onto a chair or counter, stand on one foot and grab the other foot behind you, gently stretching the front of the leg. Maintain the stretch for 30 seconds, then switch legs. Repeat two more times.
For the lower leg, calf stretches can be helpful. Simply hold onto the back of a chair for balance, raise up onto your toes (the balls of the feet) and remain in that position for a few seconds. Then lower your heels to the ground and repeat.
There are a few lifestyle changes that can help improve the feeling of tired, heavy legs and tender feet. For example, if you’re overweight, losing a few pounds can reduce the pressure on the legs and may help to relieve leg tiredness. Also, overconsuming salt leads to fluid retention and swelling that can cause sore feet and legs. Cutting down on salt intake can reduce fluid retention and swelling. Finally, make sure you’re drinking lots of water. Dehydration can lead to cramping and discomfort in the legs and feet.
After a long day of constant activity or continual standing, blood pools in the lower legs, causing discomfort. Compression socks are a great tool for tired leg sufferers because they improve circulation by gently squeezing stretched vein walls and restoring blood flow back to the heart. Another activity which has a marked negative impact on circulation is smoking. How? The nicotine in cigarettes decreases the flow of blood and causes blood vessels to tighten, making it more difficult to circulate. So, quitting smoking may also offer some relief from achy, painful legs and feet because it will improve your circulation.
Footlogix® Treatment for Tired Legs and Sore Feet
Even if you stay active, regularly do exercises focused on leg and foot comfort and are proactive about your circulatory health, you still may suffer from sore legs and feet. That’s when additional treatments from Footlogix® can help. The Footlogix® Specialty Solutions line includes the Footlogix® Tired Leg Formula. This distinctive product is specially formulated with vasoactive properties to support micro-circulation and greatly improve the feeling of tired, heavy legs and feet. The specialized solution contains unique ingredients, such as urea to lock in moisture; horse chestnut to promote normal tone in the walls of veins and reduce edema; and witch hazel, which acts as an anti-inflammatory and reduces swelling. In fact, the Footlogix® Tired Leg Formula is so effective at treating tired legs and feet that it is a popular treatment recommended by podiatrists for chronic venous insufficiency and varicose veins.
Footlogix® Tired Leg Formula can be used as often as needed to soothe achy, heavy legs and sore feet. To apply, simply shake the can well and massage a walnut sized amount of the light, mousse formula into the legs and feet. The product is instantly cooling and refreshing. It is absorbed quickly and leaves no sticky residue, so clothes and shoes can be worn immediately after application. The Footlogix® Tired Leg Formula is highly recommended for wearers of compression socks or hosiery, as the ingredients won’t break down elastic fibers.
Footlogix® products are unique in that the Footlogix® line of transformational foot care products contain state of the art ingredients and incorporate their advanced and patented Dermal Infusion Technology® (DIT) to deliver these key ingredients past the outer layer of the skin of the feet and deeply into the epidermis.
In addition, all Footlogix® products create a protective barrier to protect the feet and lock in moisture, while still allowing the skin to transpire, and are perfectly safe for everyone, including diabetics, seniors, and anyone else who may be immune-compromised or just have sensitive skin.